Vignettes of Shiloh

Ole Miss

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I have run across so many wonderful sources about the Battle of Shiloh and its participants but were not long enough to write about in a thread. So I thought I would have a thread for quotes and comments that fall through the cracks. I would encourage others to share their gems with all of us.
Regards
David

"Rev. A. J. Witherspoox, Chaplain of the Upper Seaman's Bethel, in New Orleans, sends the following short sketch.

Mr. W'itherspoon is well known, both here and in Europe, as the friend of all sailors. He is also chaplain of the La Dei Army of Tennessee, and an active member of that body. At the beginning of the war, he was living in Marengo county, Alabama, and there raised and assisted to equip a company called "The Witherspoon Guards." On account of his profession as a minister of the Gospel, he declined the captaincy, but went out as a private in the ranks. Served thus for several months, until appointed chaplain of Twenty-first Alabama regiment. It was while serving in this capacity that he became cognizant of the heroism of the boy whose name he now seeks to inscribe upon the pages of history:

"Thomas Hilton, of Uniontown, Alabama, volunteered in 'The Witherspoon Guards,' Twenty-first Alabama regiment at the tender age of fourteen. He was too small to carry a musket, and was detailed as a drummer boy. At the battle of Shiloh, he threw away his drum, and so importuned his captain for a gun that it was given him. Shortly after, while in the thick of the fight, he was shot through the face, the ball entering one side and passing out at the other. After the battle, I found him lying on the ground bleeding, as I then thought, to death, and knelt beside him to pray and, if it might be, to comfort him. To my surprise, he looked up at me, the fire in his eyes unquenched, and gasped out, while the blood gushed afresh at every word :

" 'Yes — chaplain — I'm badly hurt — but — I'm — not — whipped.'

" Thomas Hilton yet lives in Uniontown, Alabama, respected by all who know him. His friends and fellow-citizens regard the ugly scars, which yet appear on

each side of his face, with pride and reverence."

In connection with the above, Mr. Witherspoon pays a high tribute to the commander of " The Witherspoon Guards, " Captain James Rembert : "One of the bravest and truest of men, respected and beloved alike for his valor and for his superior qualities as an officer. At Shiloh, he held his company in unbroken ranks until, while leading them, he fell mortally wounded, and "died a prisoner in the hands of the enemy."

Source
The Southern Bivouac
September 1884 – May 1885

Volume III
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=wu.89062341144&view=1up&seq=5Pages 326-327
 

Ole Miss

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This post is about a little mentioned and perhaps little known epitaph about a famous soldier of yore who's death adversely affected his nation. This epitaph was placed upon his grave in New Orleans where he laid until 1867 when he was removed to the Texas State Cemetery in Austin.
Regards
David

STORY OF AN EPITAPH

Soon after the fall of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston at the battle of Shiloh, and the transfer of his remains to New Orleans, a lady visiting the cemetery found pinned to a rough board that rested on the temporary tomb the following beautiful epitaph. It was written in a delicate hand with a pencil, and the rain had nearly obliterated the characters, but she made a verbatim copy of the manuscript and sent it to one of the New Orleans papers with the request that if possible the name of the author should be published. This was gladly done, and the exquisite lines went the round of the press of this country and England as a model of English composition. Lord Palmerston pronounced it "a modern classic, 'Ciceronian in its language." Public curiosity being aroused, the auth- orship was traced to John Dimitry, a young native of New Orleans, and a son of Alexander Dimitry, who before the war occupied a distinguished position in the State Department at Washington. Young Dimitry, though only a boy served in Johnston's army at Shiloh, and on visiting New Orleans and the grave of his dead chieftain wrote the lines on the inspiration of the moment and modestly pinned them on the headboard as the only tribute he could offer. When the question arose concerning the 'form of epitaph to be placed on the monument erected to the memory of the dead Confederate General the committee of citizens in charge with one voice decided upon this, and it is now inscribed upon the broad panel at the base of the statue. — Exchange



IN MEMORY.
Beyond this stone is laid,
For a season,
Albert Sidney Johnston,
A General in the Army of the Confederate States,
Who fell at Shiloh, Tennessee,
On the sixth day of April, A. D.,
Eighteen hundred and sixty-two;
A man tried in many high offices
And critical enterprise.
And found faithful In all.
His life was one long sacrifice of Interest to conscience;
And even that life, on a woeful Sabbath,
Did he yield as a holocaust at his country’s need.
Not wholly understood was he while he lived1;
But, In his death, his greatness stands confessed In a people's tears
Resolute, moderate, clear of envy yet not wanting
In that finer ambition which makes men great and pure.
In his honor — Impregnable;
In his simplicity— sublime.


Source
Confederate Veteran
Volume 1 (1893)
https://archive.org/details/confederateveter01conf/page/2/mode/2up
Page 3
 

Ole Miss

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This remeberance of Shiloh comes from an officer in W. H. L. Wallce's Division and describes the reversal of Confederate fortunes on Monday morning when Grant's men attacked on the Union's right flank
Regards
David

"But the night passed away, and the morning of the 7th found us ready to
take the aggressive. A new line had been formed, and a new army was ready to take the lead in an effort to recover the ground lost the day before. The main battle began about nine o'clock in the morn ing, and ended about four o'clock in the afternoon. On this field was to be seen the most splendid fighting ever seen on this continent. Our artillery was admirably worked, and the infantry ably supported the artillery. The maneuvering was splendid. The enemy were driven inch by inch. They seldom regained anything they had lost; still, they fought desperately at times, until by four o'clock they were in full retreat and the victory was ours. It was my good-fortune to serve immediately on the left of the Eighteenth United States Regulars, and their perfect discipline and regular movements lifted a load from our breasts, and filled us with a confidence we had well nigh lost the day before. Every advance was stubbornly resisted; every charge was met by a counter-charge; and though the lines shifted forward and back, yet every returning charge carried us farther along toward the camps we had lost, then through them and beyond, until McCook's division, that had marched twenty-two miles the day before, and stood in the streets of Savannah all night of the 6th, was at nightfall beyond our farthest camp of Saturday night."



Source

Military Essays and Recollections; Papers Read Before the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States

SHILOH. By George Mason, Brevet Major U. S. V.
Volume 1
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.$b69484&view=1up&seq=110&q1=shilohPage 102

 

Ole Miss

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I have always been amazed at the number of young men---though often boys in their early teens---who enlisted and served as drummers in the regiments during the ACW. I have stories about their service and sacrifices yet this little sketch of a drummers life is sad yet funny. How many of these boys suffered from P. T. S. D. for the rest of their lives is a horrific thought.
Regards
David


Little Joe
"Before the battle opened, the little drummers were found in the ranks, gun in hand, as fierce as fighting cocks, with no notion of shirking the dangers of that position. From that dire intent they were rescued by the good chaplain, who organized them into a hospital corps, under his own efficient command. There was one among them called “Little Joe,” a mere boy in years and size. He worked like a hero all day caring for the wounded; and when night came it found him by the log-house used as a hospital, at the Landing. Exhausted by excitement and toil, he lay down on the wet ground outside and went to sleep. Through the night, as the wounded died inside they were carried out to make room for the living. Some hospital attendants, bearing their bloody burden, saw Joe asleep, and supposing him dead, laid a corpse down beside him. This was followed by others; and when the tired drummer awoke he found himself at the head of a ghastly rank of whom he alone was living, and from whom he fled yelling that they should not use him for what he called a
header."

Source

Military Essays and Recollections; Papers Read Before the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States

Volume 1

EPISODES AND CHARACTERS IN AN ILLINOIS REGIMENT.
By Lucien B. Crooker, late Captain Fifty-fifth Illinois
Infantry U. S. V.
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.$b69484&view=1up&seq=52&q1=34Pages 41-42
 

Ole Miss

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I have always been interested in the view of the lowly enlisted man in battle but especially at Shiloh. It was a brutal contest fought from dark to dark on a smoky, dusty filed with over 80,000 men on the first day. The vast majority of the combatants were green troops with many having little if any practice with their weapons.
I found this to be an honest recounting of a young man who was fighting for his life yet able to view his surroundings and all the chaos surrounding him.
Regards
David

"The opening of the battle of Shiloh , as I remember it , was as follows :
Saturday evening , April 5th , 1862 , about six o ' clock , our company was ordered to go on picket, and received their first cartridges . We went out about one and a half miles southwest of where we were camped. A part of the company was placed on picket , four men on a post , the rest of the company was in the rear as reserve . Nothing happened during the night , but about daylight we heard some firing in our front , and the pickets were ordered to rally on the reserve . We fell in and marched out to a road that ran east and west. When we got there , the Twenty - first Missouri came up with Colonel Moore in command. He halted his regiment and Captain Saxe, of our company,(A) , asked him where we should fall in. Colonel Moore said ;
" You can fall in on the right or on the left of my regiment . ” Captain Saxe said ; " Boys , we will fall in on the right ; we will head them out. " Captain Saxe pulled off his coat and threw it on the ground and gave the command to forward march . We did not go far until the road came to a large fieldmand turned to the right . Across the fields we could see the rebels in the woods . It looked to me as though there were three or four lines of battle. We had not gone far down the road until we were fired upon from behind the fence on the left hand side of the road. Captain Saxe, and Sergeant John H . Williams were killed at the first volley. First Sergean, Cooley Smith and some others were wounded. Some laid down in the road; others got behind trees and commenced firing. We could not see the rebels behind the fence, but could see them across the field and down the road near an old house. The Twenty - first Missouri let down the fence and formed in the open field. They did some shooting and Colonel Moore of that regiment lost his leg then. The firing did not last long; we thought it was a skirmish, and was all over. We picked up Captain Saxe and Sergeant Williams and the wounde, put them in our rudbber blankets, and brought them back to camp. We had nothing to eat all night, but our cook had some breakfast ready for us .”

George W Graves, Company A, 16th​ Wisconsin Infantry

Source
War Papers Read before the Commandery of the State of Wisconsin,
Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States.

Volume IV
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=hvd.32044090105404&view=1up&seq=72&q1=50Pages 55-56
 

NH Civil War Gal

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I’m amazed at the numbers. My town is 25K and the city near me is 125K. I’m trying to imagine the city population basically all gathered and in a huge fight. It just seems inconceivable now to picture that.

I’m sure the little drummer boys had some PTSD for the rest of their life. I posted a story, long time ago, on one at Gettysburg who was put in the hospital corps and suddenly he was holding an amputated limb! Writing as an adult man, you could tell it still effected him greatly. He was certainly sickened by it and when asked to hold the limb by the surgeon, he didn’t know what was coming.
 

Ole Miss

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I believe there are several reasons why Johnston may appear as relatively unknown to you
Albert Sidney Johnston always seemed like a decent sort to me but not much seems to be known about him or am I missing something?

Just off the top of my head I believe there are several reasons why Johnston may appear as relatively unknown to many today:

He died early in the war before having opportunities to gain recognition or possibly fame;

He was an unassuming person who did not seek the limelight and evidently had little ego or desire for publicity and in fact offered to serve under Beauregard before the Battle of Shiloh;

He fought in the Western Theater in largely rural areas with little press coverage and with a lack of photographic resources;

The pre-war army was a small community and the troops were spread out all across the country in many remote areas where little press coverage or notice was given except for actions such as The Pig War of 1859. Johnston was named commander of the US Army for the Utah Expedition but the campaign was not popular and little was accomplished gaining little renown for Johnston.

Of course this all my opinion not based on facts beyond those I recall.
Regards
David
 

Ole Miss

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I certainly mean to be balanced in presenting these vignettes and have voices from both sides sharing their experiences at Shiloh. I have noticed during my reading of old magazines, proceedings and letters that about 15 to 20 years after the war ended some reconciliation efforts were beginning to be made by the veterans.

I especially love the last paragraph of this presentation:
"...I cannot close this article without saying that the men of this battery were the bravest men we ever had to deal with. They were worthy of our steel, not one of them surrendered with a whole hide. They had been in the United States service for twenty years.
If this should fall into the hands of any soldier, on either side in this charge. I would be glad to correspond with him.”

Regards
David


“Cleburne's Brigade at Shiloh. — J. A. Wheeler,
Salad- Texas:

I give the Veteran a brief account of Shiloh as I saw it being a private in the Twenty- third Tennessee Regiment Pat Cleburne's Brigade. On the morning of April 6, "62, when the entire line moved forward, our brigade had to face a battery of twelve guns: eight 20-pound rifles and four 12-pound Napoleon guns. We were ordered to halt and lie down in a deep ravine while this battery was shelling our position at a fearful rate. Just in our front was a ridge, a peach orchard, and the Federal encampment. General Cleburne told us to prepare for a charge. Soon it was ordered and we moved forward at double-quick, passed through the encampment, down the slope on the north of the ridge near to a branch. Here a line of infantry rose up and poured such a destructive volley into our ranks that we recoiled and fell hack to the first ravine. Here we rallied, and General Cleburne came to as again and said. "Boys, don't he discouraged; that is not the first charge' that was ever repulsed: fix bayonets and give them steel," Then he ordered. "Forward! Charge! " We leaped forward with a deafening cheer and drove the infantry out of the ravine, but firing from the battery and a line of infantry was so heavy just in rear of the battery that we again fell hack, 'with great loss, but soon reformed, and were ready for the third charge, when a Louisiana brigade was
brought up to our support. Another charge was ordered and we moved forward over the dead and wounded, this time to reach the goal that had cost the lives of many of our best men. But the struggle was not yet over for the battery, as the boys in blue tired some of the guns when we were within ten feet of their muzzles. Here we had a hand-to-hand contest over the guns, but we were triumphant, and this fine battery of twelve guns was ours. Cleburne's Brigade was composed of the Seventeenth, Twenty-third and Twenty-fourth Tennessee and First Ark Regiments.
I cannot close this article without saying that the men of this battery were the bravest men we ever had to deal with. They were worthy of our steel, not one of them surrendered with a whole hide. They had been in the United States service for twenty years.
If this should fall into the hands of any soldier, on either side in this charge. I would be glad to correspond with him.”

Source
The Confederate Veteran
Volume II, January 1894, Number I
Cleburne's Brigade at Shiloh”
by J. A. Wheeler
https://archive.org/details/confederateveter02conf/page/n25/mode/2up?q=13Page 13
 

Ole Miss

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The 8th Independent Battery, Ohio Light Artillery though little used during the Battle of Shiloh, yet it was still valuable asset for the Union Army. The unit was unassigned but was placed at the extreme left flank of Grant's forces along the bluff of the Tennessee River where it assisted in repulsing the last Confederate effort on Sunday evening.

Listed below are 2 letters he wrote to his mother while stationed at Shiloh shortly after the bloody fight.
Regards
David


a)

...”As soon as it was known they were retreating I got ready three of the teams and started out upon the battle field to bring in the wounded. Such a sight I never want to witness again. Hundreds of the dead and wounded were lying around—some with arms, others with legs, and some their heads shot off. One poor fellow had the whole of his face, excepting his eyes, shot away. A great many died of their wounds before they could be conveyed to the Hospital, and others upon the way. The number is immense, and can only be counted by the thousands.”

b)

...Some of the dead still lay about unburied—they are nearly all rebels. It is a pitiful sight. Some are so advanced in decay that the sight is loathsome in the extreme. The wounded are still being conveyed to the boats and sent down the river. So great was the number of wounded, and so little preparation made for the wounded previous to the battle, that a great many died before they could be cared for. On yesterday I was down at the landing for forage, and in passing by one of the hospitals, I counted ten or twelve dead rebels in one pile who had died of their wounds and were not yet buried. The way they bury is to dig a long ditch about three feet deep and then throw in as many as will cover the bottom, turning their faces downward, and put the dirt in again and turn away as if they had been paying the last offices of respect to a dog, instead of a human being.

Source
Faces of War
https://facesofthecivilwar.blogspot.com/2012/06/private-putnam-eyewitness-to-shiloh.html?m=1
a) April 11, 1862
b) April 14, 1862
 

Ole Miss

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I have read many stories about the Battle of Shiloh and its participants but very little that describes what Pittsburg Landing looked like when Union troops landed in March of 1862. George Mason, a member of an unidentified regiment, shares a very detailed first impression of Pittsburg Landing. It appears very similar today with the brush cleared and the road paved.
Regards
David


Shiloh

“On a bright afternoon after a shower of rain, our transport ran her nose into the bank, and we climbed the bluff, going into camp half a mile back of the Landing. We had reached Pittsburg Landing, and there was yet to be seen the bare arm and hand of a Rebel soldier poorly buried by his comrades in their hurry to get out of the way of our gun-boats. One may hardly realize at this late day the terror these boats inspired in the minds of the enemy, and the correspond ing confidence we reposed in their protecting power. It was in that desperate effort to force the fighting, and drive us from their protection, that the enemy lost the able, and possibly, had he lived, victorious leader, Albert Sidney Johnston.

To the right and left of Pittsburg Landing, far up and down the river, there was a heavy growth of timber, the great trees in many places leaning out over the water, almost ready to fall. Immediately in front of us appeared a low level stretch of hard bottom-land, a half-mile or more long, and perhaps two hundred yards wide; back of this, the bank, seventy or eighty feet high, and thickly overgrown with underbrush, with an occasional tree or stump, rose precipitately. Just above us, where a gully brought the surface water to the river, the road wound up from the Landing. Once on the bank, one could see, a little way back, a log-house, with a clearing about it of perhaps forty acres. This was, during a part of Sunday, General Grant's headquarters. Winding along in a westerly direction, the road led to Corinth. About a mile from the river a road branched off to the north, to Crump's Landing, crossing Snake Creek by a bridge about a mile from its intersection with the Corinth road. On the left, two or three roads wound their way through the timber, one going nearly due south leading to Hamburg Landing. The ground was undulating, cut up in many places by sharp ravines, and except where an occasional clearing presented itself, was everywhere covered with dense timber, in many places so thickly grown with underbrush and young trees as to make an almost impenetrable thicket. Snake and Owl Creeks had their origin about three miles back of, and a little south of west from, the Landing; these creeks flowed north, then, bending to the northeast and east, finally emptied into the river about a mile north of the Landing. On either side of Snake Creek were low marshy lands, affording a very complete protection to our camp on the north and northwest. On the south, Lick Creek and its tributaries gave us a like protection.”


Military Essays and Recollections;
Papers Read before the Commandery of the State of Illinois, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, Volume 1

Shiloh
by George Mason

https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.$b69484&view=1up&seq=103&q1=92

Pages 94-95
 

Ole Miss

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through which his soul escaped to the bosom of his Maker.’

I love the richness of the Victorian vernacular which seems so stilted today to our jaded ears today.
A member of Company C, the 154th​ Tennessee Infantry, James Real from Oola, County Limerick, of Ireland was the color bearer of his unit on Monday, April 7th​. Having immigrated to Memphis, TN, Real had cast his lot with the Confederacy. His bravery was noticed and commented on by his comrades during the fighting on the Confederate’s right flank.
Regards
David

“...receiving the wound through which his soul escaped to the bosom of his Maker.’ His service record notes that he was killed at Battle of Shiloah while carrying the colors of the Rgt.Clearly a popular young man in Memphis, a remembrance of the Irish private was printed in the Memphis Appeal on 15th April. In it he was reported to have expressed his willingness to die for the cause of the South, which he believed to be just. As a friend he was kind, uncalculating and sincere. He was known but to be loved. All he possessed was at the disposal of his friends- in fact, that was his weakness, if such it can be called. His memory will be forever embalmed in the hearts of his friends; many a tear wrang from manhood’s arid fountain and woman’s tender heart, have shown the depth of love and the sincerity of the sorrow of his bereaved friends.’
Source

His Soul Escaped to the Bosom of His Maker’: A Limerick Man at the Battle of Shiloh
The Battle of Shiloh – The Irish in the American Civil War
https://irishamericancivilwar.com/tag/battle-of-shiloh/
 

Ole Miss

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This story of the “Returned Sabre” is one of the best examples of time healing all wounds. By 1895 many of the veterans were entering their 50’s and 60’s and had laid away many of the passions they held from war. I simply wonder if they original owner or some of his kin claimed the “sabre” returned by the the lady who had received it from her conquering soldier?
Regards
David

“Returned Sabre”
“On Sunday morning during the battle of Shiloh a Federal soldier picked up on the battlefield a sabre, evidently made in a common smith shop, and sent it home to his mother in Illinois is a souvenir of the war. The lady to whom it was sent kept this sabre until the spring- of 1895, when she sent it to Capt. S. K. Simpson, of Gallatin, Tenn., a Confederate veteran of the 30th Tennessee Infantry. Capt. Simpson has left this sword at the office of The Confederate Veteran in the hope that the owner or some of his family may identify and get it. It is about the shape and length of the old U. S. sabre, has a rude guard, black- walnut handle, on which the letters "O. B." are carved. There is also what was once a tine leather scabbard, with tin trimmings at the mouth, center and tip.”




Confederate Veteran Magazine
Volume 3, September 1895, Number 9
https://archive.org/details/confederateveter03conf/page/278/mode/2up?q=shilohPage 279
 

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Terry’s Texas Rangers at Shiloh

Terry’s Texas Rangers, 8th​ Texas Cavalry Regiment, was a legendary organization that served in the Army of the Mississippi and then the Army of Tennessee. I love this little vignette as it shows just how human the Civil War soldier was despite how they were glorified by family and fellow veterans.

The General Polk mentioned in this story was Leonidas Polk who was the First Corps Commander at the Battle of Shiloh who I believe has always been portrayed as a cardboard man. Yet in this story we see a little of the commander with his actions with the Rangers.
Regards
David

"...Whatever differences of opinion may exist among military men as to which is the stronger arm of the service, cavalry or infantry, Terry's Rangers, opposed by an isolated regiment, never were repulsed, but in a fair match on one hundred fields perhaps made their adversaries bite the dust. But the rangers carried no clanging saber — that weapon of the centuries past, fit only to frighten women and hack unarmed footmen with — but bore arms they were accustomed to, rode lithe like Commanches, complete masters of the horse, and shot quick as sportsmen sure on the trigger. In brief, Terry's Rangers, known in reports of battles and on the muster-rolls as the "Eighth Texas Cavalry," …

...Saturday night preceding the battle Colonel Wharton gave one man permission to
discharge a wet gun. To his amazement the whole regiment had wet guns, and they all went off. General Polk 'double-quicked a brigade of infantry over from their hiding to
discover if the army which next morning was to surprise the Federals was really surprised itself at that supreme hour under the shadows of the night. The old Bishop, on ascertaining the facts, was not in the mood to lead in sacred song, and Wharton and the entire regiment were placed under arrest, from which they were not released until long after the roar of battle, commencing on the right at dawn of day, told the way the tide was tending. It was of no avail that men and officers, through couriers dispatched, plead to take part in the glorious chase. Hours elapsed, it seemed, before Major Tom Jack — who had been promoted from the regiment to Johnston's staff — came galloping up, with face all wreathed in smiles, and gave the order to move. With a- shout that gave no cheer to the Union General if, mayhap, it reached his ears through the cyclone that had burst about him, away in column of fours swept the unleashed bloods of the saddle — away from Owl Creek up a slope, over acres of ground blue with Federal dead, down the road through lanes of our own infantry, around a point of woods into an opening and across a ravine into line, and the regiment confronted the Federal General Prentiss, holding, as it were, the pivot on which hung for the time the fortunes of the day. Separated by a rail fence and half concealed by timber and undergrowth, the enemy made good use of his advantage. Wharton and the two Terrys — son and brother of the late leader — fell, the last mortally wounded, and thick and fast horses and riders were dropping, when a rush was made forward, and the enemy's front line gave back, followed by the rangers, who began tearing away and leaping the fence. Just then the enemy opened with grape and canister, and this brave command, instead of an opportunity to efface the memory of their arrest, found themselves now exposed to a fire not within the power of mortals long to withstand. But a wild yell and rattle of small arms is heard in the Federal rear. Hardee comes charging down ; a whoop and another volley, and Prentiss and his brigade three thousand five hundred strong, surrender. The rangers had not charged in vain, and had the honor of escorting Prentiss and his men to the rear. To say that he was mad and swore like a trooper is to state it mildly, and give him the benefit of any membership he may have had in the Young Men's Christian Association. “

The Southern Bivouac
Volume I, September 1882 --- August 1883
Terry’s Texas Rangers
By A. P. Harcourt
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=wu.89062341086&view=1up&seq=116&q1=91Pages 90-92
 

Ole Miss

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In my research I have read many young men's impressions of battle but few that mention what happens after being wounded. Yet this man did not note his struggle but the kindness of another man.
Regards
David

A Serving Politician

"I belonged to Company I, of the Sixteenth (Wisconsin). I was wounded about 2 o'clock in the afternoon of the 6th. The next day I was taken aboard one of the boats lying at the landing, and a few days later was taken to Savannah and placed in a hospital. One day soon after I was placed in the hospital, a gentleman came to my cot and inquired about my wound and how I was being treated; and his kindly words, which I felt came from a manly and sympathetic heart, cheered me more than words can describe. That evening, or the next day, I do not now remember which, that great-hearted patriot, while passing from one boat to another, fell into the river and was drowned. That man was Louis P. Harvey, Governor of Wisconsin, who, at the promptings of his great, loyal, loving heart, had immediately, on hearing of the battle, left the comforts of the governor's mansion and come here to see that "his boys" had everything done for them that it was possible to have done. We number him as one of Wisconsin's honored dead, at Shiloh. All honor to his name and rest to his soul ! I sincerely hope —yea, I know —that the great State he served so well will never cease to cherish his memory or fail to reverence the little green mound under which he now rests in Forest Hill Cemetery, at Madison."



Wisconsin at Shiloh
by Wisconsin Monument Committee
1909
Address at the Dedication of the Monument Erected by the State of Wisconsin on the Battlefield of Shiloh in Memory of Her Soldiers Who Fought on the Field. Delivered April 7. 1906
by Jacob Fawcett of Omaha, Neb
https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=loc.ark:/13960/t70v90b1q&view=1up&seq=99
Page 93
 

Ole Miss

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Is not often I find a reminiscence of a battle that is humorous and witty. The author of this quote was a Captain in the 8th Iowa Infantry which was captured late on Sunday, 6th of April when the Union line at the "Hornets Nest" collapsed and was surrounded. The 8th was heavily engaged with 481 casualties out of 689 Present for duty casualty rate of 50%!*
Regards
David

“An incident here may not be uninteresting. Retreating on the double quick, with leaden and iron hail flying thick around us, a soldier a pace in front of me fell, and I was so close that
I fell over him. At the same time a spent ball struck my left arm and another went through my canteen. My arm tingled with pain, and the little water left in my canteen was warm and
running over me as I fell to the ground. I thought it was my life blood. In fact, I was sure I was killed, but spying a " Reb " close by, coming with all speed, for they had us on the
run, I made one grand, desperate effort to gain my feet, and, much to my surprise, succeeded without trouble. I assure you I was a pretty lively corpse, for I left old
"Butternut" far in the rear, and did not even say "Good day."

PERSONAL REMINISCENCES OF SHILOH.
By Captain C. P. Searle
War Sketches and Incidents Iowa Commandery of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States
https://archive.org/stream/warsketchesincid01mili/warsketchesincid01mili_djvu.txt
Pages 333-334

*The Battle of Shiloh and the Oraganizations Engaged
By David Reed
https://trace.tennessee.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1000&context=utk_utpressPage 91
 

Ole Miss

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This account by a private about the confusion and chaos surrounding an army as battle is joined and individual units are poured into the melee of war. These comments certainly do not represent the glorious image of the conflict as represented in study and lore.
Regards
David


"The musketry firing had become loud and general, and whole batteries of artillery were joining in the dreadful chorus. The men rushed to their tents and seized their guns, but as yet no order to fall in was given. Nearer and nearer sounded the din of a tremendous conflict. Presently the long roll was heard from the regiments on our right. A staff officer came galloping up, spoke a word to the Major in command the order to fall in was shouted, the drummers began to beat the long roll, and it was taken up by the regiments on our left. The men, with pale faces, wild eyes, compressed lips, quickly accoutered themselves for battle. The shouts of the officers, the rolling of the drums, the hurrying to and fro of the men, the uproar of approaching but unexpected battle, all together produced sensations which cannot be described. Soon, teams with shouting drivers came tearing along the road toward the landing. Crowds of fugitives and men slightly wounded went hurrying past in the same direction. Uproar and turmoil were all around; but we, having got into line, stood quietly with scarcely a word spoken. Each man was struggling with himself and nerving himself for what bid fair to be a dreadful conflict. What thoughts of home and kindred and all that makes life dear come to one at such a moment.

Source

"Shiloh" As Seen by A Private Soldier.
A Paper Read Before California Commandery of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States, May 31, 1889.

https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc2.ark:/13960/t8pc2tz83&view=1up&seq=20

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